We all shop weekly at The Dwarf House and Goodfellows Dry Goods Company. You may even shop daily at Relentless. If you doubt that you’re included in this group, read on and you’ll discover that you’re probably wrong.
The first Subway was opened in 1965, but it was actually named Pete’s Submarines after a family friend of the founder, Peter Buck. When people heard the name of the restaurant being advertised, it often sounded like “pizza marine” instead of “Pete’s submarines,” and they went hoping to find seafood pizza. In 1968, the name was changed to Pete’s Subway, and would be changed yet again to Subway a few years later as the business took off.
In 1902, George Dayton became a partner in a Minneapolis department store known as Goodfellow’s Dry Goods Company. Once he eventually took over Goodfellow’s, he renamed it Dayton Dry Goods Company. Several decades later, the company was renamed Target because they wanted to hit the center bulls-eye in price, value and overall experience.
The first “The Dwarf House” opened in Virginia in 1946 to sell comfort food like burgers and sandwiches, and, unlike the Chick-fil-A we know today, many of the menu items were made with beef instead of chicken. But once the founder, S. Truett Cathy began selling her secret chicken recipe, customers couldn’t get enough. Chick-fil-A because a trademark name for the product so that others couldn’t steal the idea and as new restaurants popped up, the name remained. You can visit the original Dwarf House today, which sells its specialty Chick-fil-A sandwich along with other items.
Formerly known as Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web, creators Jerry Yang and David Filo agreed, the name a mouthful, so they changed it to “Yahoo!” The creators joked that it stands for “Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle.”
The first Pepsi drink created in 1893 included sugar, water, caramel, nutmeg and several other ingredients. This new drink, originally Brad’s Drink, became an instant success. The drink is known as Pepsi because the creator thought it helped with indigestion and battle inflammation of the digestive track, also known as dyspepsia.
Founded in 1964, the first Nike store was known as Blue Ribbon Sports. Today Nike produces shoes, but it used to only distribute the shoes shipped to them by Japanese manufacturers. In 1971, Nike began making their own shoes and changed the name to Dimension 6 for less than a year. The creators eventually changed the name to Nike that same year after the Greek goddess of victory.
The popular dating app known as Tinder was first called “matchbox.” Meant to be a play on words to show that love “ignited a fire,” cofounder Jonathan Badeen said the name didn’t sound right. He looked for a new one in the thesaurus and found “Tinder” because it means a dry material that could be used to kindle a fire.
Open a new tab and go to “relentless.com.” You will be directed to Amazon. The founder changed the name because many thought it sounded too aggressive. Amazon eventually won as the new name because it is the largest river in the world by volume and suggested the company was large too. Because it started with an “A,” it meant that it would also be one of the first websites seen when listed alphabetically.
The original name of Dunkin’ confused consumers because they didn’t know what was being sold until they stepped inside to order. After two years of “Open Kettle” being in business, the founder switched the name to Dunkin’ Donuts. The new name confused Americans on the spelling of doughnut. This year, the name will gradually be changed to Dunkin’, and the chain will include and cut certain menu items.
If you never understood why a pizza chain was named after a game, you are not alone. Dominos was originally named DomiNick’s Pizza after the original owner Dominick DiVarti. As more shops began opening, the name was changed to Domino’s because DiVarti didn’t want his name broadcasted all over the country.